Veteran continues medical field journey at Quinnipiac

November 09, 2023

Okeroghene Rufin smiles in a close-up headshot wearing a medical coat.

Okeroghene Rufin, MD ’27, entered the U.S. Army immediately after high school and is now following her dreams of receiving a doctorate at Quinnipiac.

As soon as Rufin graduated from high school in 2014, she entered the U.S. Army as a 68K medical laboratory specialist and served for five years. She worked in the department of pathology in army medical centers. During her time in the service, Rufin analyzed a variety of biological specimens, performed scientific clinical tests and reported the results to doctors. Along with this, she worked in a national security asset laboratory in partnership with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Then, as a non-commissioned officer, Rufin led, trained and mentored soldiers while serving as the supervisor of the virology department in an army regional hospital laboratory located In Fort Eisenhower, Georgia.

“I joined the U.S. Army because my uncle has served and I was interested in exploring new opportunities, serving my country and traveling the world,” said Rufin.

While in the service, Rufin completed a bachelor’s degree which she described to be challenging but achievable due to her time management skills and communication with professors. After serving for half a decade, she decided to pursue another degree as a Bobcat.

“The collaborative, welcoming environment I experienced when interacting with the amazing faculty and student body set Quinnipiac apart from other schools,” Rufin said. “Talking to current students and hearing how happy they are at Quinnipiac exemplified how much the school cares for their students' success. I knew this was the right fit for me.”

While she hasn't decided which field she wants to specialize in yet, Rufin pushes herself to thrive professionally and academically to one day use all the tools and knowledge learned at the medical school to best serve her future patients. She expressed that she has already gained lifelong mentors, friends and colleagues here.

"Jason Burke and the veteran affairs office are awesome,” said Rufin. “He made the transition into medical school much easier. The veteran community here is great and I love that they have many activities and events to attend. I truly feel supported here and I know that I am in good hands at Quinnipiac.”

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